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Great Yarmouth Borough Council's Cabinet to discuss new Coastal Adaptation Policy

Great Yarmouth Borough Council's Cabinet is to discuss a new document which explains the support available to people affected by erosion on the coast.

With limited national funding available for sea defences on what is among the fastest eroding coastlines in Northern Europe, the council has drawn up a new Coastal Adaptation Policy which will be discussed at a meeting on July 17.

Developed by officers across a range of disciplines - including Housing, Strategic Planning and Environmental Services - and drawn up in consultation with Coastal Partnership East, the document takes account of local and national policy and legislation.

The policy includes a range of options for adapting to erosion to ensure different measures can be applied in different locations and for different communities. The document does not cover hard sea defences and all the options are subject to what funding might be available.

Councillor Carl Smith, leader of Great Yarmouth Borough Council, said: ''As our residents are only too well aware, our coastline is extremely dynamic and continues to face rapid erosion. Given the limited national funding available we needed to create a policy that enables the council to devise tailored responses for those affected that address their unique needs.

''It lays out a framework of interventions and options, to enable the council to work with the community to develop an adaptation plan, which includes amendments to housing and planning policy.''

Alongside the Coastal Adaptation Policy, the Cabinet meeting will also consider the Resilient Coasts project. Funded by the Environment Agency, the project provides £8 million to be deployed across the Great Yarmouth borough and East Suffolk district coastlines.

The Resilient Coasts project will test a variety of interventions to help communities adapt to erosion, outside of traditional sea defences, and includes the potential purchase of alternative sites for relocation.

Councillor Smith said: ''There is no central government policy that supports adaptation in response to coastal erosion. Great Yarmouth has been chosen for this funding because it is facing these issues now, and the approaches implemented locally could be rolled out nationally in the future.

''A one-size-fits-all approach is not appropriate for the diverse communities we represent and, if adopted, this policy will enable the council to have conversations with its coastal communities to shape plans that meet their current and future needs, as well as examining the funding available to provide support at any given time.''

·       The Resilient Coasts project is funded by Defra as part of the £200 million Flood and Coastal Innovation Programmes which is managed by the Environment Agency. The programmes will drive innovation in flood and coastal resilience and adaptation to a changing climate.

Last modified on 11 July 2024

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